One of my very good and dearest friends just moved away to California. She had been methodically planning this move since I met her at least five years ago. I still remember when she told me that her goal was to move to California. The words became a process and plodding pace of actions and executions. I still remember saying to her in the wicked New York winters, “I’m right behind you! I’ll see you there in sunny California!”
Over the last few months, I’ve seen my friend had to decide what was worth keeping and what was worthless and needed to be given up and given away. Through her and throughout my life, I’ve seen the value of things and that things are really just things until there is are sentimental memories and moments attached to them. Invigorated and inspired by my friend and her move, I started to dig through my messy closets and cabinets as to what were just things to me and were more than things. The mass majority of things were, indeed, things. However, hidden in the darkest of places were ‘things’ I could not part with: my yearbooks, my over 50 journals that I started writing in when I was 8 or 9-years-old, pictures of friends and family, my research into a hip replacement surgery, my kidney advocacy work, and, most of all, multiple pieces of paper written in 2013 when my book was about to get published. The papers contained my goals, plans, and preparations in the years to come in my life. My handwriting was clean, crisp, and confident. I had many expectations. I was and am my own worst critic and enemy.
The years have gone by. Here I am in the now. Many people may think that I am ambitious, but I do not have a desire to ‘succeed’ in the sense of ‘climbing up the ladder’ or ‘going to the top of the mountain’ where it is lonely and lonesome. I am, however, determined. Determined to meet the goals I made for and of myself. However, it is the anticipation and aftermath that will change you and your life and never the goal itself. It is never a singular or solo moment, but a build up to that moment and then everything thereafter.
When I re-read my goals that I had met and faced with, I realized that there were so many obstacles that had come my way that the goals being met were a slow-moving and a painstaking process. I had fallen more times than I could count. I had failed and risked more times than I could tell you. To win, you have to lose. To succeed, you have to fail. Life interrupts and throws more curveballs of the unexpected, unplanned, and unforeseen that we are NEVER really ready for what is to come. I had never really been ready for the results or how I felt after a goal I made was met. You can plan and prepare and have all the goals you want, but to actually be ready for meeting and accomplishing them is a whole other ballgame. I think about my friend who had met her goal to move to California. I think about if she is ready for what is to come for her. I think about if we are ever really ready for what is to come for all of us. And, the answer is “NO.” Life is always, always happening, moving, and living on as we are planning and preparing that I’ve reached a point to just try to be ready for the unplanned. The main goal I have for myself now is to be OK and to be OK with everyone and everything else. We are never really ready for the reality until we are forced to get real.
Are you goal-oriented? What goals have you made for yourself? Do you prepare and plan ? When you met or supposedly accomplished what you set out to, were you ever really ready for the aftermath of meeting those goals?
Keep smilin’ until we meet again,